Tag Archives: Nelson County Kentucky

Hon. Jasper W. Muir Obituary – Nelson County

Jasper W. Muir was the son of William Locke Muir and Mary E. Hester, born December 11, 1828, in Clark County, Indiana.  His family moved to Nelson County, Kentucky, the next year.  Jasper and Mary Elizabeth Wickliffe were married about 1850 and had six sons before her death in 1868:  Nathaniel Wickliffe, William Logan, Joseph Halstead, Jasper W. Jr., Charles Wickliffe and James D., who lived only eight months.  Nine years after Mary Muir’s death Jasper married a widow, Florida Sloan Talbott.  The couple had three children:  Joseph A., Mary and Henry Louis Muir.  William Logan Muir and James D. Muir predeceased their father.

The Courier-Journal, Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Thursday, April 11, 1907

Hon. Jasper W. Muir Dies at Bardstown

Pioneer Lawyer of Nelson County Passes Away In His Eighty-fourth Year

Bardstown, Ky., April 10 – Hon. Jasper W. Muir died at his residence here at an early hour this morning as a result of a stroke of apoplexy suffered three years ago.  He was eighty-four years old and was one of the most prominent men in this community.  He was a pioneer lawyer of the Bardstown bar, having been a partner of the celebrated Ben Hardin when that lawyer was at the height of his fame.  Mr. Muir was a veteran of the Mexican War, was formerly school superintendent of Nelson County, and was a member of the last constitutional convention.  He relinquished the practice of law about thirty years ago, and since that time had been engaged in the banking business.  He was one of the wealthiest men in Nelson County.  He is survived by his widow and seven children, one of whom is Mrs. Mary Hagan, wife of Robert J. Hagan, of Louisville.  The funeral will take place Friday afternoon.

Jasper W. Muir, December 11, 1823 – April 10, 1907.  St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery, Bardstown, Nelson County, Kentucky.

Private Joseph Linton Nally Gave All During WWI

Private Linton Nally, 1894-1919.  Died in France.  Gethsemani Catholic Cemetery, Nelson County, Kentucky.

In the quiet Gethsemani Cemetery of rural Nelson County, lies a war hero.  Joseph Linton Nally fought during World War I and gave his life in France, defending our country and the allied nations.  He was such a young man at the time of his death – only 25.

Linton, as he was known, was the youngest child of George Napoleon Nally and Annie Linton.  In the 1910 Nelson County census George is listed as a farmer, 52 years of age, he and his wife had been married 30 years.  Annie is 55, has born seven children, seven living.  Three children live with their parents – Anne, 19; William, 17; and Linton, 15.

On February 20, 1917, Linton married Mary Lillian Hicks.   January 6, 1918, a son was born, Randolph Joseph Nally.

Linton’s WWI registration card lists his date of birth as August 7, 1894, lived at RFD#1 New Haven, Kentucky (in Nelson County).  He is married.  Linton is described as tall, of stout build, with blue eyes and light colored hair.  I could find no other information about his service.

Linton must have come home at least once while on duty, because on the day of his death, January 7, 1919, Lillian was six months pregnant with their daughter, Mary Oneida, born April 16, 1919.

In the 1920 census Lillian and her two children are living with her father, Daniel Hicks.

In the 1930 census Lillian Hicks Nally has married Joseph Sidney Reid.  They have a houseful of children, Randolph and Mary Oneida Nally the oldest.

Mary L. Reid, December 24, 1892 – June 24, 1973.

Lillian lived an additional three years after her second husband died.  She was buried next to Linton Nally.


1803 Will of Mary Luckett of Washington County

Mary Luckett was a very recent immigrant to Washington County, Kentucky, when she died there in the spring of 1803.  Her husband, Thomas Hussey Luckett, died in Port Tobacco, Charles County, Maryland, in 1797 – she came to Kentucky after that date.  Mary’s children are listed – most of the girls with their married names.  I checked marriage records for Washington County, but could find none of these names, leading me to believe they married in Maryland.  Henry Luckett, the youngest, married Elizabeth Beaven in Washington County 17 June 1805.

I find it very interesting that she sends her executor to Maryland, to remove a Negro boy from the man she sold him to – Osborn Ecton.  Was he cruel to this young slave? 

Rev. Stephen Theodore Badin is the priest mentioned in her will, to receive five pounds.  He was born in Orleans, France, July 17, 1768, and did much to minister to the Catholics in Kentucky during the early days of the state.

Also remember that Marion County was still a part of Washington County at this time.  I believe it is in that area that the Luckett’s lived.

Washington County, Kentucky Will Book A, Pages 247-249

In the name of God, amen.  I, Mary Luckett, of Washington County and state of Kentucky, being weak of body, but sound and perfect mind and memory, recommending my soul to almighty God, who gave it, and my body to the earth to be decently buried at the discretion of my children, doth give and bequeath

My personal and real estate in the following manner and form, to wit.  It is my will and desire that my Executor shall have a sum of money arising from the sale of my property, sufficient to pay him and bear his expenses to the state of Maryland, and also money, if any shall be required, for the use of removing a Negro boy, called Joseph, of the possession of Osborn Ecton, which boy was sold to said Ecton by me.  It is my will and desire that Elizabeth Cheatham, Benjamin Luckett, Thomas Luckett, Priscilla Roby, Sarah Simms, Ann Mellon, Verlinda Roby, Elizabeth Luckett and Henry Luckett, my beloved children, shall have an equal proportion of my real and personal estate after paying all my just debts and expending the sum of five pounds with the Rev. S. T. Badin, and lastly, I constitute and appoint Hezekiah Luckett, the sole Executor of this my last will and testament, revoking any other will or wills heretofore made by me.  In testimony whereof I have set my hand and seal this twentieth day of April eighteen hundred and three.

Singed, sealed and delivered by Mary Luckett as her last will and testament in the

presence of us, and we in the presence of her and in the presence of each other, the day and year above written – Henry Miles, Bernard Miles

Mary Luckett

At a County Court held for Washington County the second day of May 1803.  This will was proved by the oaths of Henry Miles and Bernard Miles, subscribing witnesses thereto and ordered to be recorded.

And on the motion of Hezekiah Luckett, the Executor therein named who made oath and executed and acknowledged bond in the penalty of six hundred pounds conditioned as the law directs, a certificate is granted him for obtaining a probate thereof in due form.

The Lucketts of Port Tobacco, Charles County, Maryland, Newman, 1938

Thomas Luckett


Thomas Luckett, son of Samuel and Anne Luckett, was born about 1720, in Port Tobacco Parish, Charles County, Maryland.  His wife was Mary, who shared in the will of her mother Sarah Griffin, of Charles County, during 1796. From the ages and marriages of his children, it can be concluded that Thomas wedded somewhat late in life.

Children of Thomas and Mary (Griffin) Luckett

  1. Benjamin Luckett married Elizabeth Semmes
  2. Priscilla Luckett married Barton Robey, settled in Nelson Count, Kentucky
  3. Sarah Luckett married John Semmes, settled in Nelson County, Kentucky
  4. Elizabeth Luckett married James Oldham
  5. Thomas Luckett married Mary
  6. Anne Luckett
  7. Verlinda Luckett married Joseph Osborn Robey, according to the rites of the Catholic Church, February 22, 1797.
  8. Hezekiah Luckett married Elizabeth
  9. Henry Luckett married Elizabeth Beaven.

Thomas Luckett maintained his seat in Upper Port Tobacco Hundred, where he was a tax payer in 1783, with the following tracts – ‘Quick Dispatch’ of 15 acres with one good dwelling; ‘Semmes’ Support’ of 40 acres; ‘No Dispute’ of 48 acres with one good dwelling; and ‘Luckett’s Outlet’ of 24 acres.  These tracts were acquired during the Revolutionary War, inasmuch as up to the year 1774 Thomas Luckett paid no quit rents to the Lord Proprietor.

In 1778 Thomas Luckett took the Oath of Allegiance and Fidelity to the State of Maryland in Charles County, his signature appearing on the list of ‘His Worshipful Robert Young Returns’.

According to the census of 1790, Thomas Luckett was the head of a family, he and another man being over the age of 16, 1 boy under 16, 6 females and 11 slaves.

He died intestate in Charles County.  His widow Mary was issued letters of administration, while the inventory of his personal estate, taken in April 1797, showed property given to his five children at the time of marriage, but since returned to the estate.  The final account was rendered April 15, 1797, by this widow, and distributed to her and nine unnamed children.  John Griffin and Thomas Luckett were bondsmen.

On April 10, 1797, an indenture made in Charles County showed that Benjamin Luckett and Elizabeth his wife; Barton Robey and Priscilla, his wife; John Semmes and Sarah, his wife; all of Nelson County, Kentucky.  James Oldham and Elizabeth, his wife; Thomas Luckett and Mary, his wife; Anne Luckett; Joseph Osborne Robey and Valinda, his wife; Hezekiah Luckett and Henry Luckett, all of Charles County, Maryland, deeded to Elizabeth Keith, of Alexandria, Virginia, a tract of land in Charles County called ‘All Dispute’, being a portion of Zachariah Manor which by patent of November 30, 1797, had been granted to Benjamin Luckett, Elizabeth Oldham, Priscilla Robey, Thomas Luckett, Sarah Semmes, Anne Luckett, Valinda Luckett, Hezekiah Luckett and Henry Luckett, heirs of Thomas Luckett.  Hezekiah Luckett was given the power of attorney for the residents of Nelson County.

1790 Will of Valentine King

According to an article on the King family published in Genealogies of Kentucky Families, Valentine King was born in Stafford County, Virginia, about 1747, ‘the son of William King, Clerk of the Court, and Justice of Stafford County, 1742-1760, and his wife, Elizabeth Edwards, daughter of John Edwards and his wife, Jane Arrington, of Westmoreland County, Virginia.’

Valentine King, along with his brothers, John, William and Nimrod, fought in the Revolutionary War as members of the Stafford County Militia, 3rd Virginia Regiment.  They were all discharged from the camp at Valley Forge, February 16, 1778, and returned to Stafford County.  They soon moved to Kentucky, receiving land for their military service.

Valentine King received land in Jefferson County, Kentucky.  He died in early April 1790.

In the name of God amen.  I, Valentine King of Nelson County and district of Kentucky, being of sound mind and memory, thanks be to God for the same, do make and ordain this my last will and testament in manner and form following.  That is to say, first of all, I recommend my soul to God who gave it and my body to the earth from whence it came, to be buried in a Christian-like manner at the discretion of my executors hereafter named, and as to the worldly estate it hath pleased God to give me I dispose of it in the following manner.

Imprimis.  My will and desire is that all my just debts and funeral charges be first paid and satisfied.

Item.  I give and bequeath to my beloved sister, Elizabeth Owens, during the term of her natural life, one third of the profits arising from the plantation I purchased of Patrick McGee, which said plantation after her decease goes to my brother, John Edwards King.  I also give and bequeath to my said sister, Elizabeth Owens, during her natural life one Negro girl called Cate, which said Negro after my said sister’s decease goes to my brother, John E. King, and I further give to my said sister, Elizabeth Owens, one half the increase of the said Negro

Cate, that shall be raised from her during the life of my said sister, to her and her heirs forever.

Item.  I give and bequeath to my beloved brother, John Edwards King, the plantation and land I purchased of Patrick McGee, he, paying annually to his sister, Elizabeth Owens, one third part of the profits arising from the said plantation during her life, to him and his heirs and assigns forever.  I also give my said brother, John E. King, after the death of his sister, Elizabeth Owens, one Negro called Cate and one half the increase that shall have been raised from her to him and his heirs and assigns forever.  I further give my said brother, John E. King, two hundred acres of land in Jefferson County, known by the name of the Poplar Level to receive the same and have possession after the death of Elizabeth Crips, to whom I have left the said land during her natural life and I further give to my brother, John E. King, my wearing apparel with my saddles, bridle and saddle bags to him and his heirs forever.

Item.  I give and bequeath to Elizabeth Crips, daughter of Nancy Brashear, during her natural life, two hundred acres of land, her choice, out of five hundred acres of my

land in Jefferson County, known by the name of the Poplar Level on Floyd’s Fork, which said land at her death goes to my brother, John E. King.  I also give to the said Elizabeth Crips my mare called Jenix and three thousand weight of tobacco to her and her heirs and assigns forever.

Item.  My will and desire is that all the rest of my estate, real and personal, be equally divided between my beloved mother and my brothers William and Withers King and that my mother’s part at her decease go to my two brothers, William and Withers, to them, their heirs and assigns forever.

And lastly I do hereby appoint my trusty and beloved friends, George and Cuthbert Harrison, Executors of this my last will and testament, hereby revoking and making void all other wills by me heretofore made, declaring this and only to be my last will and testament, in testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 22nd day of February 1790.

Valentine King

Signed, sealed, published and declared by this testator in presence of – Anthony Foster, Paul Kester, Cuthbert Harrison.

At a Court held for Nelson County on Tuesday the 13th day of April 1790.  This last will and testament of Valentine King, deceased, was presented in Court by Cuthbert Harrison, one of the Executors herein named and proved by the oaths of Anthony Foster, Paul Kester and Cuthbert Harrison, subscribing witnesses thereto and ordered to record.

Teste.  Gen Grayson, Clerk of the Court

Nelson County – Will Book A, Pages 1-4



Augustine Cooper and His Two Wives – Mahala Monica Bean and Matilda Coomes

Augustine Cooper and Mahala Monica Bean, daughter of Bennett Bean, were married February 12, 1827.  In the 1850 Washington County census, Augustine, 43, and Monica, 41, are listed with ten children – Bennett, 22; Charles N., 19; Richard R., 18; Alexander B., 16; Philip, 14; Sarah E., 13; James W., 10; Mary E., 8; Thomas H., 6; and John B., 4.  In 1860 only Bennett and Richard were not living with the family.

Monica Bean Cooper died September 20, 1862.  Two years after her death Augustine married again – this time to Matilda A. Coomes, June 20, 1864.

In the 1870 census Augustine is 64, Matilda, 34.  Their three small children are Augustine, 5; Mary, 3; and Joseph, 11/12.  Augustine Cooper died November 22nd of that year.  In the 1880 census Matilda is living with her three children in Nelson County, where she was raised as a child.  She died at the young age of 49.

According to the death certificate of son Joseph, who became Brother Cyril Cooper, C. F. X., Augustine Cooper and Matilda Coomes are listed as his parents.  Daughter Mary became Sister Mary Catherine Cooper and was a school teacher in Paducah.  Augustine Cooper and his wives left many descendants.

Augustine Cooper, born June 4, 1805, died November 22, 1870.  Monica, wife of A. Cooper, born August 8, 1807, died September 20, 1862.  St. Rose Catholic Cemetery, Washington County, Kentucky.


1829 Will of John Duncan of Nelson County

The Duncan and Lewis families were relatives of my Linton family.  They settled in northern Nelson County, in the Bloomfield area, near the Spencer County line.  Port Gibson, mentioned in the will, is located in Mississippi.

In the name of God amen.  I, John Duncan, of the county of Nelson and state of Kentucky, knowing that it is appointed once for all men to die, being weak in body but of good mind and memory, blessed be Almighty God for the same, do make and publish this my last will and testament, in the manner and form following.  First of all, I recommend my body to the earth to be buried in a decent Christian-like manner.  As it respects such worldly property with which it has pleased God to bless me, first, I give and bequeath unto my beloved wife, Mary Duncan, all of my estate during her life, both real and personal, of which I die seized or possessed with, or whatever part she chooses to keep, if she sees cause not to keep all, whatever part she sees cause not to keep, to be divided among my children equally at my death, and as for my estate both real and personal, of which I die seized or possessed, I do at my beloved wife’s death give, will and bequeath to each and all my children an equal proportion of all my money, goods and chattles, both real and personal, of which I may die seized or possessed.  At the death of my beloved wife, I do give, will and bequeath to my son, Charles Duncan, a Negro woman by the name of Eliza, about nineteen years old, which is now in my daughter Rebecca Dye’s possession, John Dye, her husband, has hired and her time is not yet out.  I do also give, will and bequeath the said negro woman Eliza and her increase forever to my son Charles Duncan, for my daughter Rebecca Dye’s particular use, during her natural life, and at her death to descend to her children, and the remainder, whatever more come to her, my daughter Rebecca Dye.  I do give, will and bequeath to my son Charles Duncan, for my daughter Rebecca Dye’s particular use during her natural life, and at her death to descend to her children.  And it is my will and desire that the whole of the land shall be divided equally in quantity and quality, as there is a great difference in the value of the land, and for the remainder of my estates, both real and personal, of which I may die seized or possessed with I do give, will and bequeath each and every one of my children an equal proportion of all my money, goods and chattels, both real and personal of which

I may die seized or possessed, my daughter Elizabeth Coursey that is now living near Gibsonport, it is my will and desire that her part shall be in money or something else to suit her as I do not wish for any of the Negroes to go down to that country.  I give and bequeath unto my daughter Elizabeth Coursey her proportion of my estate during her life and at her death to descend to her children, and I do hereby constitute, ordain and make this my last will and testament, and I do hereby disannul, disallow and revoke all other wills by me formerly written.  And I do appoint my beloved wife, Mary Duncan, my two sons, Robert and Charles Duncan, my Executrix and Executors, to this my last will and testament.  In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this twenty-first day of July in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and twenty-nine.

John Duncan

Signed, sealed, published and declared by the above named John Duncan to be his last will and testament in the presence of us:

John Saunders, Thomas Dawson, Searles Lewis

At a County Court held for Nelson County at the courthouse in Bardstown on Monday the 12th day of April 1830.

This last will and testament of john Duncan, deceased, was presented in court and proved by the oaths of John Saunders, Thomas Dawson and Searles Lewis, the subscribing witnesses thereto and ordered to be recorded and on the motion of Charles Duncan, one of the executors therein named (the other two having refused to act), he, having given bond with Robert Duncan, John Duncan, Robert Smither, Thomas Huston, James Tyler, Alexander McMeekin and James Thomas, his securities, gives bond in the penalty of $20,000 conditioned according to law and took the oath the law in  such case directs.  It is ordered that a certificate of probate of said will be granted him.  Attest.  Nathaniel Wickliffe, Clerk of the Nelson County Court, appointed by said court 12th day of May 1830.

Will Book F, Pages 438-439

Ben Hardin – Famous Lawyer of Bardstown

The Courier-Journal, Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

Tuesday Morning, December 18, 1900


Former Residence of Old Ben Hardin

In Suburbs of Bardstown

The Place Where The Famous Lawyer Lived and Died

[Bardstown Record]

One of Kentucky’s historic residences is ‘Edgewood,’ the former home of Ben Hardin, in his day one of Kentucky’s greatest lawyers.  This old homestead is situated in the suburbs of Bardstown, and is a large and irregular structure built entirely of brick.  It was originally a one-storied building, with two rooms in front.  To this an addition was made on the left, comprising a wide hall and front room and chambers in rear with similar apartments above.  These added rooms and the hall are unusually large and airy.  The hall is entered by a large door in front, and contains a massive old-fashioned staircase, connecting with the upper story.  The present occupant, Hon. Lud. McKay, has added a handsome veranda to the house, which greatly improves its general appearance.

This dwelling was erected between 1819-1822 by Mr. Hardin on land that was contained in the original pre-emption of Bardstown.  The tract contains about two hundred and fifty acres of as fine soil as there is in Nelson County.  A wide lawn in front of the residence stretches down to one of the streets of the town, and is liberally shaded with a fine growth of forest trees.

Ben Hardin, who erected and long occupied the residence, was born in Pennsylvania, February 29, 1784, and at the age of four years was brought to Kentucky by his parents, who settled in Nelson County.  At an early age he was placed in the school of Dr. Priestly, then the most able educator in the West.  At the age of twenty, young Hardin began the study of law, which he soon mastered and was admitted to the bar of Bardstown.  His first case was one in which a large tract of land was involved.  He was alone on his side and opposed by several of the most distinguished lawyers of the day.  However, he won his case and his fame was made, and from that time on he never lacked for clients.  Readers of the Standard are familiar with the history of Mr. Hardin; his public services; his numerous debates in Congress with Henry Clay; how he was dubbed the ‘Kitchen Knife’ by John Randolph, and the ‘Red Fox’ by some other equally as great man.  Suffice it to say that he was one of the shrewdest and most successful attorneys that ever practiced his profession within the domains of this old Commonwealth.

In early life Mr. Hardin was married to Elizabeth Barbour, daughter of Col. Ambrose Barbour, of Washington County, one of Kentucky’s most distinguished pioneers.  She is described as a handsome woman, with many admirable traits of character.  Seven children were the result of this union – three sons and four daughters.

The latter were Lucinda, who married John Helm, afterward Governor of Kentucky; Emily, who married Dr. Palmer, a prominent physician of Washington County; Kate, who married Thomas Riley, a prominent attorney of Bardstown, and Sallie, who married Thomas W. Dixon, a Kentuckian living in the West.  Of the sons, William died of a fever in childhood; James and Rowan married in early life – the former a Miss Chinn; the latter a Miss Cartmell.  James died a short time after his marriage.  Rowan became an able lawyer; served in the State Legislature, and in 1851 was appointed by President Fillmore Secretary of Legation to Guatemala.  During the year it is supposed he was assassinated in the mountains of the Isthmus of Darien, as a skeleton was discovered and identified as his by some papers that were found in the vicinity.

Old Ben Hardin’s home life was always a happy one.  His doors were always open, and he dispensed the most lavish hospitality to all who came beneath his roof.  Many distinguished men were entertained by him at his residence, among whom may be mentioned Gen. William Preston, ex-Senator Garland, Bishop Kavanaugh, Judge John Rowan, gov. William Duvall, and many others who afterward became men of national reputation.  Mr. Hardin’s death occurred in September 1852, and was the result of a fall from a horse which he received as he was journeying from Bardstown to Lebanon to attend court.  He was buried in an old grave yard in a field near the pike leading from Springfield to Lebanon, by the side of his mother.  His grave is marked by an unpretentious stone bearing the simple inscription: ‘Ben Hardin, of Bardstown.’  Mrs. Hardin had preceded her husband to the grave in August, her death being hastened by constant attendance upon Mr. Hardin.  She is buried in the old pioneer cemetery here, in the midst of children and relatives.  A marble shaft, that has been sadly disfigured by vandals, marks her last resting place.  The only inscription is bears is ‘Elizabeth Barbour Hardin, wife of Ben Hardin.’

Ritchey and I have visited the Pioneer Cemetery in Bardstown, but we did not see a stone for Elizabeth Barbour Hardin.